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Maj Gen Purshotam Vig, AVSM, VSM (Retd) was born in 1944 in the picturesque town of Baramulla, in the state of Jammu and Kashmir. Followed by turbulent initial years, he surprised himself by opting for and making it to the elite National Defence Academy. He was commissioned in the then Corps of Electrical and Mechanical Engineers of the Indian Army in 1964. In the course of his eventful career spanning nearly four decades, he acquired high-end qualifications both in the technical and executive channels. He held many key and prestigious command, staff and instructional appointments both in his own discipline and on the general staff. A rare honour for a technical stream officer. Focused on his profession, he would still find time to pursue his interests in reading and in the outdoors.
A qualified engineer, the author holds masters in three varying disciplines: Electronics (communications) from the Army, Business Administration and Defence Studies. Besides, he is an alumnus of the Defence Services Staff College, Wellington, Higher Command Course, College of Combat, now the Army War College and a fellow of many prestigious technical institutions.
He was conferred with the Presidential awards for distinguished services, namely, Vishisht Seva Medal following command of the battalion in 1985, and Ati Vishisht Seva Medal for his contributions in the operationally-active scenario in the Northern Command as a Major General. In addition, he was awarded the Commendation Card by the Chief of the Army Staff for his contributions in a strike formation as a Brigadier in 1994.
On the extracurricular front, he is an adventurist, loves nature and outdoor life. He qualified as a paratrooper and was a part of the elite parachute formation. The author has been and still is a keen squash player, an ardent golfer and a proficient yachtsman. He has fair achievements in these sports to his credit, including having represented the country in yachting.
He has an inquisitive mind and is a keen observer of life. His urge to go deeper into the philosophy of life has triggered his passion to diversify his reading in many directions, giving him an insight into various facets of life. He is a unique combination of an intellectual mind, an adventure-lover and above all a man full of compassion. His achievements in varied fields are a rare mix. He was considered to be a source of inspiration and a role-model by many.
His passion for wide range of reading and his rich experiences in life were a natural precursor to sharing his thoughts and experiences with others. Towards this end he authored a highly readable book, 'Seasons of Life, Extraordinary Life of an Ordinary Soldier'. The book was released in a glittering ceremony in June 2010. Many felt that reading the book was an educative experience. They found the book to be inspirational, instructive and interesting. Overwhelmed by the wide acceptance and the feed back received, the author made an honest effort to reach the youth and sent complimentary copies to virtually the entire hierarchy in the army, to numerous schools, training institutions, libraries, universities, besides to many luminaries across the country. The response to this effort has been awesome.
His writing style is simple. Thoughts flow as if straight from the heart. Some felt he had a poetic style. Hence his next venture to pen his thoughts, again on matters of life, this time not in prose, but in poetry.
He hung his uniform in 2002 and lives with his wife in Panchkula, India. He actively continues with his literary pursuits, besides regular squash and golf.